What Is Critical Mass?
Critical mass is the point at which a growing company becomes self-sustaining and no longer needs additional investment to remain economically viable. It is a crucial stage in the development of a growing company. It is the point at which the business becomes profitable enough to continue growing by itself and no longer requires investment from outsiders.
A company that sustains profitability is able to exist safely and reliably above its critical mass.
If you’re thinking of becoming an illustrator, consider that it is a business and not a job. And like any business, you are going to need a plan to fund it, until you reach critical mass.
The Trap of quitting your day job.
The previous time I tried to be an artist was about a decade ago, I did it by quitting my day job and moving to the city. ( That was probably not the right strategy)
This time, when I decided I wanted to be an artist the first thing I did was to secure “Day jobs” that would give me a measure of security, while I pursued my illustration career.
I think the proper order might be to become an artist, then quit your day job, after you’ve reached critical mass. Not the other way around.
How to quit your day job
Hint, it doesn’t have to be cold turkey. And it’s good to have a diversity of income. Maybe you’d like to keep a piece of your day job.
Invest in your career/business.
In your job, create situations where you can create maximum value for the minimum time. Or try offsetting your hours so you’re not competing in traffic and during lunch hour.
We’ve been mistakenly taught to believe that the goal is to quit your day job and become an artist. Let me suggest a different goal, make time for your art daily even if it’s a tiny piece and work to grow it to critical mass. And once you’ve done that you can decide if you want to quit your day job. Maybe you won’t.